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Old 01-17-2016, 01:37 AM   #1
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Got a week off at the end of March. Would a San Juan Islands charter be a bad idea a

Thanks for any insight.
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Old 01-17-2016, 06:13 AM   #2
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I would take the ferry as it stops at all the islands. Stay over night at Friday Harbor. For week trips we usually take the ferry. Ferry to Victoria is also nice. Weather and water can be cold windy rough.
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Old 01-17-2016, 08:06 AM   #3
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March is like a very cold Mobile winter. Be sure your charter vessel has operable diesel heat. What type of vessel?
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Old 01-17-2016, 10:09 AM   #4
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Good idea or bad idea depends upon your experience, desired level of adventure and the boat under you.

Do have a look at historic wind data for Friday Harbor

http://http://www.ndbc.noaa.gov/view...=frdw1&meas=ws

You'll see March is one of the windier months in the PNW.

I'm not confident the link posted works. If not go to the National Buoy Data Center, zoom in on the map @ Friday Harbor, click the yellow diamond for station FRDW1 and choose the "View History" link then the "Wind Speed" link.
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Old 01-17-2016, 10:51 AM   #5
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Thanks all. We're looking at a Grand Banks 49. It is heated. We would hire a captain to go with us so we can continue getting experience and learning. We do have some charter experience and this would be a continuation of "checking out the trawler life" type trip. Was told that there could be days we need to stay in port. Other than marina reservations wouldn't really have anywhere we have to be (other than a return flight time at the end).
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Old 01-17-2016, 11:06 AM   #6
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I don't have the time in this region that most of the others do, BUT...

Traveling outside of the prime season it's likely you will have no crowds or full marinas. Vessel traffic will be lighter. You may possibly enjoy the place as its a little less hurried. Attractions are more open and businesses are delighted to see you. Bring some good rain gear and warm clothes, it may be more fun than July.

We spent Christmas in Ganges and went through the SJ islands on the 26th. I write this from the boat in Point Hudson Marina/Port Townsend (where it is blowing and raining). We will be underway by lunch time. Off season cruising IS good!
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Old 01-17-2016, 11:29 AM   #7
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We keep our 40' trawler in Anacortes and often make off-season trips to Friday Harbor. We prefer tying up at the guest dock and enjoy walks around town. Plenty of other boater friends go out in the winter and many will anchor in quiet anchorages through out the San Juan's. Cruising in a 49' GB with an experienced skipper will be a delight...even if windy and wet you'll be cozy onboard. Bring a good book!
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Old 01-17-2016, 11:32 AM   #8
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JFDII,

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Old 01-17-2016, 01:51 PM   #9
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Your plan sounds good and with a little luck the weather may cooperate be prepared for wet cool as pointed out by others. PNW you can get 4 weeks of rain every day It is presently raining outside and predictions for the next 9 days the same.
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Old 01-17-2016, 02:37 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JFDII View Post
Thanks all. We're looking at a Grand Banks 49. It is heated. We would hire a captain to go with us so we can continue getting experience and learning. We do have some charter experience and this would be a continuation of "checking out the trawler life" type trip. Was told that there could be days we need to stay in port. Other than marina reservations wouldn't really have anywhere we have to be (other than a return flight time at the end).
With that thought process, go for it. Sounds like you have a plan, can afford it, are looking for a fun getaway and gaining experience.

Even if you spend the whole time indoors and do short hops, some lumpy ones maybe, you should have a good time with a mix of marinas, like Poulsbo and anchorages like Sucia. Just examples. There are many other little west coast flavoured spots in the San Juan's that any first timer would enjoy.

Learn to play crib!
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Old 01-17-2016, 02:40 PM   #11
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Wherever you go it might feel like you own the place because of few boats out and about. Sucia and Stuart Islands will be pretty empty. Friday Harbor will be wide open as will Roche. Could be a great trip and yes rain could be in the forecast but a heated 49 will be great. Have fun!
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